Psychological disorders can be really ugly but some can actually give you a good laugh at times when you learn about them for the first time. We really do not intend to insult anyone here but it is just that there are indeed some syndromes and disorders which sound unrealistic and impossible. Unfortunately, they do exist and they are screaming testament of how complex human mind can be. In this article on 20 weird psychological disorders and syndromes, we try to explore some of the little known syndromes which you possibly never heard of. Some may actually make you laugh.
Weird Psychological Disorders and Syndromes: 1-5
01. Boanthropy – It is a psychological disorder where a person believes that he/she is a cow or an ox (gender specific disorder) and starts living a life of a bovine. It is related to another psychological disorder called Lycanthropy where a person believes that he/she is a wolf. Stories of were-wolves might have stemmed because of these handful of people who suffered from Lycanthropy. Sufferers of Boanthropy can be called as were-cow.
02. Stendhal or Standhal Syndrome – It is a psychosomatic illness. When a mentally healthy person is bombarded with a lot of beauty, he/she experiences this syndrome. The symptoms may range from rapid heartbeat, dizziness, confusion to hallucinations. It mostly happens to tourists and is mostly triggered by masterpieces, natural beauty.
03. Jerusalem Syndrome – Here too, a mentally healthy person irrespective of his/ her religion, race etc. become psychotic after entering Jerusalem. Similar to Jerusalem Syndrome is the Paris Syndrome. However, in Paris Syndrome, Japanese are the people who get more effected.
04. Stockholm Syndrome – This syndrome is not as conspicuous as other syndromes. It is only seen when the sufferer gets abducted. When the sufferer gets abducted, over time they become sympathetic and even loyal to the abductor and actively help the abductor in their activities. An example which many would know is the Disney princess Beauty of the “Beauty and the Beast.” There is something called as “Lima Syndrome” which is exactly opposite of the Stockholm Syndrome. Here the kidnapper becomes attached and sympathetic to the victim.
05. Dr. Strangelove Syndrome – One of the sufferer’s hands behaves on its own accord. It carries on functions like unbuttoning, manipulating tools etc. It is also called as “Alien Hand Syndrome.”
Weird Psychological Disorders and Syndromes: 6-10
06. Diogenes Syndrome – This syndrome is seen mostly in elderly. It is a behavioral disorder where the person neglects himself, hoards his place with animals or garbage and lacks shame. It is also called as “Senile Squalor Syndrome.”
07. Kleptomania – This disorder is known to many. The person suffering from this disorder steals anything and everything from something as small as a pin to something as big as an electron microscope (well they try to steal at least). Another interesting thing is many people doesn’t even know that they have this disorder, they don’t know that they are stealing.
08. Cotard’s Syndrome – Popularly known as the living dead syndrome, the person believes that he is dead and has no existence or his body is decaying, his blood putrefying etc. It was discovered 100 years ago but it was scientifically accepted as a disorder only in 2007.
09. Synesthesia – It is a neurological phenomenon in which arousal of one sense triggers the stimulation of another sense organ. In this way, the person can taste abstract objects or smell music or simply can relate things which cannot be related by a normal person,
10. Capgras Delusion – This is related to Schizophrenia. The person suffering from this disorder believes that his/her spouse or a family member is replaced by another person who is the replica of that family member or spouse. The person can recognize others perfectly well.
Weird Psychological Disorders and Syndromes: 11-15
11. Fregoli Delusion – This is exactly opposite of Capgrass Delusion. Here the person believes that a single person is meeting/talking to him/her as different people. It was first reported in 1927 and is named after an Italian actor Leopoldo Fregoli.
12. Bigorexia – Most of the people must be familiar with the disorder “Anorexia” a condition where the person believes that he/she is fat and shuns eating completely or eat a slice of an apple or an orange in a day! Bigorexia is exactly opposite of anorexia. In Bigorexia, the person believes that he/she is not muscular enough and keep on working out and pushing his/her body to the extremes.
13. Reduplicative Paramensia – The person believes that one place exists in two or more areas simultaneously, simply put duplicated or is completely relocated to a different place altogether. It mostly happens when the person suffers from a brain injury.
14. Celebriphilia – this is a mental disorder where the sufferer has an over-the-top desire to have a romantic or sexual relationship with a celebrity.
15. Bibliomania – You certainly have heard “Bibliophile” which means a person who loves books. But in Bibilomania as the name suggests the person is so crazy for books that he keeps on collecting them and not just once but same book in different editions or in hardcover etc. His normal functioning and his social and family relationships get affected because of his/her obsessive love for the books.
Weird Psychological Disorders and Syndromes: 16-20
16. Manchausen Syndrome – Everyone likes attention and sometimes we end up doing few things to get attention which is normal but the people who suffer from this particular disorder take this attracting attention to a whole new level. They can go to extremes to get attention especially from medical professionals. They can do things like drugging themselves or nearly killing themselves just to get attention.
17. Manchausen by proxy Syndrome – This is slightly different from Manchausen Syndrome. Here the sufferer causes or fakes illness in other people who are under his/her care just to get attention. This happens mostly between mother and her children where the mother goes to an extent where she changes the medical reports or even physically harm the child to make everyone believe that the child is ill.
18. Koro Syndrome – People who suffer from this disorder believe that their penises are shrinking, genitals retracting into their abdominal and would completely disappear in the coming days and once that happens they will die. It is seen mostly in Asian countries. However, the disorder is completely culture specific or it happens because the young men are not informed well about the physiology is yet to be understood completely. This disorder is becoming prevalent even in the western countries and there it is called as “Genital Retraction Syndrome.” In western countries, this syndrome is related to other psychological conditions like anxiety disorder, schizophrenia, body dysmorphic disorder etc. but Asians who suffer from this syndrome are otherwise healthy.
19. Apotemnophilia – In this the person has an intense desire to amputate his/her healthy limbs or other parts of their body. They also wish to change their body integrity. Sometimes, in extreme cases they try or even succeed to amputate their body parts by themselves. It is also called as “Body Integrity Identity Disorder” or “Amputee Identity Disorder.” Acrotomophilia is a mental illness related to Apotemnophilia. People who have Acrotomophilia are sexually attracted to the people who are missing limbs or any other body part.
20. Hybristophilia – People with this disorder are sexually attracted to the convicts who committed severe crimes like rape, murder etc. In some cases, they may even persuade their partners to commit crime. Many of the high-profile criminals have fans in which some most probably are Hybristophiles. Most of the sufferers are women. There are two types of Hybristophilia. The first type is Passive Hybristophilia- women who come under this category do not participate in crime but support their lovers and the second type is Active Hybristophilia- women actively participate and they are the ones who actually chalk out the whole plan and help their partners. Many women suffer from delusions and idealized fantasies too.
How many of these psychological disorders and syndromes did you know? Do you have any other syndrome or disorder in mind that you want to share? Feel free to drop a message.